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  1. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

    Do you buy organic? Why?

    Here are a few things to consider.

    Have you heard about The Environmental Working Group?

    I'd like to share some links from a conversation that is happening in another group that I am in. Scientists refuting the work of the Environmental Working Group.

    I thought this might get some political conversation moving here on the TFP.

    USDA, FDA findings debunk 'Dirty Dozen' fruit, vegetable list | AGDAILY

    Dear EWG, This Is Why Real Scientists Think Poorly of You | American Council on Science and Health

    Environmental Working Group and the Dirty Dozen

    And what about organic agriculture? Is it really better for us?

    I personally prefer the taste of most organic produce. They tend to be different varieties, which better appeal to my palate. But I am currently in California where organic farms are abundant, and often have shorter transport times / distances from farm to table.

    I would rather purchase local produce over organic that has been trucked in from somewhere. When I lived in Ohio, most of the organic produce came from California and was really sad looking by the time it hit the shelves, but the local farms' goods, which weren't usually organic, were superior.

    When I lived in Texas, I just bought whatever was grown in state and in season. Sometimes that was organic. Sometimes it wasn't. Most of the time I passed up produce that wasn't local.

    Here's a related link:
    Is organic agriculture really better for the environment?

    Organic farmers don't often play nice with hydroponic and aeroponic farms.
    It isn't well known among the general population, but organic certification includes these operations, and "dirt farmers" have been working to exclude them from the organic label. But their efforts have not been successful. The dirt philosophy is that with organic methods the soil can be improved over time rather than depleated. Hydroponics and aeroponics takes the soil out of the picture completely.

    Here's an article, dated but relevant:
    Organic Certification Has Always Been About Money. And That’s a Good Thing.
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
  2. Stan

    Stan Resident Dumbass

    We are all over the place with organics. I hate wax on my cucumbers and apples, organics don't tend to do that. My wife insists that berries have to be organic (thin skins, grandkids, I dunno).

    Boulder is as liberal and yuppie as it gets, organic everything is readily available (including pot).

    I'm mostly indifferent, except for said cucumbers and apples. If the price differential isn't great, I just let my wife do as she wishes.
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  3. Lindy

    Lindy Moderator Staff Member

    What Stan said.:)

    But, like it or not, with a world population approaching 7.6 billion hungry mouths, industrial agriculture (and its attendant distribution system) is the only way to feed everybody.
    Organics may be great for those who can afford the indulgence, but as a race, unless something is done about overpopulation, we are, as they say, fucked.
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  4. ASU2003

    ASU2003 Very Tilted

    Where ever I roam
    I view it as which political party do you want to support. Although over the past 40 years, the big agriculture businesses have been growing by buying up small farms and backing republican candidates. And the chemical companies are giving millions of lobbying dollars to the republicans also.

    That is the problem with GMOs, it has nothing to do with the quality of the produce or pesticide use.
  5. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

    Very good points!
  6. Lindy

    Lindy Moderator Staff Member

    Well, since God ain't makin' any more land, the only way for a big farming operation to grow is by buying up smaller farms. So, of course that is what they do. It's been that way, not for forty years... more like 150 years when mechanization started to give economy of scale advantage to larger operations.
    I (one of very few on TFP) grew up and lived on a small farm just outside of a small town. Those are my roots and culture. I don't like seeing small family farms (like ours) selling out to the big guys, but for most crops and stock a small farm is just not efficient enough to stay in business without subsidies.
    And regardless of that, many young people simply don't want to farm. It's very hard work, with a lot of state and federal regulations to keep track of. And penalties and fines if you fail to do so.
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2018
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  7. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

    Related reading:
    Corporate takeover of organic ag
    The Corporate Takeover of Organic Food

    This is a largely reactionary piece that points fingers at specific companies. I have not verified any of the statements presented as facts. I am skeptical of this news source. Still, it is an interesting read.
  8. Lindy

    Lindy Moderator Staff Member

    After doing some research on line, and some reading at the public library, my impression of Dr. Mercola remains that he is out for his own interests, his brain is addled by conspiracy theories; and that he is largely full of fecal matter. Organic fecal matter, of course.;)

    9 Reasons to Completely Ignore Joseph Mercola
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2018
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  9. rogue49

    rogue49 Tech Kung Fu Artist Staff Member

    Well, I could really care less.
    So much so that I care enough to say it in a thread about it.

    Really, it's just another gimmick.
    IMHO...food - it better be healthy, it better be fresh...otherwise you're getting sued and fined.

    This really should be the mindset and responsibility of anyone that provides it.
    Why would you want otherwise?
    Other than be some sick fuck who doesn't care how to make a buck.

    And if this is true...then I don't mind if they throw the book at you.

    I want to go out...buy...eat

    If ya poison me, then we'll have a problem...and I EXPECT my government to have a problem with it too. (and if they don't...then I'll have issue with my government too)

    I don't want to have to think about my food.
    Life is hard enough as it is.
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  10. ASU2003

    ASU2003 Very Tilted

    Where ever I roam
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  11. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

  12. PonyPotato

    PonyPotato Very Tilted

    Columbus, OH
    I buy organic if the produce looks better, if it is thin-skinned, or if it's something I usually eat the skin of without washing/cooking (tomatoes, cucumber, apples, peaches, blueberries). I typically buy organic salad greens because that's the only option that isn't ridiculously labor intensive (rinsing/sorting/drying bundles of spinach). For things like broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, asparagus, squash, potatoes, onions, mushrooms, etc.. it can go either way depending on the quality of the produce. I usually buy organic fruit because I eat the skins AND they usually taste better. Now that I am back in a place where there's actually sustainable agriculture (yay for rain!), I try my best to buy local produce, whether from grocery store or farmer's market. I have not yet done a CSA box but want to.

    I have not heard of EWG and honestly haven't done a ton of research into the politics recently. I try to support local producers when able, no matter their size, but would avoid going to a "pick your own" farm that uses pesticides. I've literally seen a farmer friend of mine lose all of his body hair at the age of 17 due to pesticides/industrial chemicals they used on their farm operations, and he has some other health issues as a result. I find aquaponics/aeroponics interesting, flavor isn't always great, and sustainability is questionable sometimes due to the equipment and energy involved.

    I don't know the answer.
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  13. girldetective

    girldetective Getting Tilted

    Re politics: I believe the biggest producer of organic produce is Walmart.

    I like the idea of organic, small farmed food, but I also like the idea of ensuring that populations are fed. Ideally I would like to see each of us have the satisfaction and safety of a small space in which to garden for ourselves. There is probably plenty of room to go around if one looks to the middle of the country - its just that collectively we are moving outward toward the coasts (no one wants to live in frack-a-land) and it is unlikely our current/future economies would support someone staying home to look after their garden and tend their home. Yet, I see and hear movement toward this anyway with backyard gardening, beekeeping and chickens, collective produce buying, farmers markets, and so forth. Its encouraging!
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2018
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  14. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

    I honestly feel that organic is just another way of saying "out of financial reach for most people". At least here in the United States, organic produce is often far more expensive than the local equivalent. It recently came up in conversation with a few friends and I realized that my decision to not purchase organic exclusively has saved our family a significant chunk of change. Weeks that I spend $25 on food, they're throwing down $100+ for the organic equivalent. This shows me that eating organic is out of reach for the vast majority of low and middle-income families who are living on a budget.

    I walked out of the 99 cent only store the other day with a huge amount of raw veggies and fruits for what felt like a handful of change. Had I purchased these items at the major grocery chain around the corner, it would have been triple the price, and had I chosen the organic equivalents at that store, it would have been double that again. I look at that and I wonder how anyone could possibly afford to eat an all-organic diet regularly.

    I assume that the economics of agriculture are different in Europe, where organic is the norm. I presume that the prices would go down because there is more demand. But maybe food is just more expensive there all around. It has been so many years since I have visited, I can't speak to that.
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  15. omega

    omega Very Tilted

    This Tiny Country Feeds the World
    Read this article a few months ago. Found it very illuminating regarding the possibilities. While I am terrible about actually eating fruits and vegetables, I do realize that civilization as a whole needs to consume more. In regards to organic, I do not care about any sort of certifications. But intensive use of greenhouses does reduce water consumption and also reduce the use of pesticides since the bugs cannot get to the plants in the first place. One other thing of note; my house came with an apple tree and a pear tree. No idea what variety, but the apples and pears are actually edible and plentiful this year.
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